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02 जुलाई 2011

Thanthania Kali Temple

Thanthania Kali Temple (KALIBADI)
Siddheswari Kali Ma

Thanthania Kali Temple : by : RAJESH MISHRA

Goddess Kali is the presiding deity of Kolkata. She is probably one of the world's most powerful symbols of Shakti, a raw divine feminine energy. In Kolkata or for that matter wherever there is a large concentration of Bengali populace, there is bound to be a neighborhood Kali temple. Bengalis simply revere the mother goddess Kali.

Some of Kolkata's prominent Kali temples like Dakshineswar and Kalighat are very popular with tourists because of the wide publicity that these two Kali temples receive. On the fringe is another equally propitious and divine Kali Temple - The Thanthania Kali Temple which is located at Bidhan Sarani in North Kolkata.
Foreign tourists are particularly attracted to the idea of Bengalis worshipping the female aspect of divinity. The vision of an all powerful mother goddess is attracting attention today when for the first time in the history of mankind so many adults live alone, outside family and organized peer groups. As the constrictions of paternalism break down and are replaced by the bewilderments of choice and lack of structure, the concept of a mother deity who all alone creates and sustains begins to feel right. Young people, particularly from the affluent West are feeling they can understand such a deity and such a deity can understand them.
The deity at Thanthania Kali temple is "Siddheswari" or someone who fulfills the wishes of her devotees. Significantly, the deity here is made of clay.
The temple which was built by a wealthy Bengali - Shankar Ghosh way back in the year 1703-04 has a checkered history. Legend has it that the world renowned spiritual giant Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa along with his chief disciple - the great Swami Vivekananda and thespian Girish Ghosh were among the few eminent men who had visited this hallowed temple in the 19th century. In fact, the great Swami Vivekananda's ancestral house happens to be just around the corner at Gourmohan Mukherjee Street.
The best time to visit this temple is on Tuesdays and Staurdays. These two days are considered to be very propitious according to Hindu mythology. You may also visit the temple on any "Amabaysa" (Lunar Eclipse). The signature prasad or offering to Siddheswari Kali Ma is plain simple coconut or "Dab" as it is referred to in the local parlance. All you need to do is drop into any of the roadside stalls that sell coconuts aplenty.
Another good alternative is to coincide your trip to the Thanthania Kali temple on the eve of Diwali - the festival of lights. Kolakata and Bengalis celebrate Kali Puja with great fanfare and camaraderie. You will overwhelmed by the crowd and the atmosphere, by the raw devotion and the air of festivity at the Thanthania Kali temple.

The deity
"Shiddeswari Kali" is the triumphant goddess, the destroyer of demons of evil and ignorance. She is also the wife of renegade Lord Shiva, daughter of Himalayas and the femme fatale among gods.
An American brought up in the climate of Victorian notions of maternal behavior once asked a devotee of Thanthania Kali Temple how he could be drawn to such a fierce deity and was quoted as saying - "Ah, but you need a strong mother who will go to battle for you when you are in trouble".
Single parents who find themselves battling for survival in their work worlds, battling traffic snarls to get back home at the end of a hard days work, battling to feed their kids and educate their kids and keep their house relatively sane, resonate to the concept that the goddess can be both the nourisher and warrior at the same.
A visit to the Thanthania Kali temple is like having a date with god.
Shiddeswari Kali (Thanthania)

Location:College Street- Mahatma Gandhi Road.
Time to Visit: 9 A.M. - 8.30P.M.
Preferred Timings: 9 A.M. - 12 P.M. & 5 P.M. - 8 P.M.
Admission Fee: Nil.
How to Reach:Local buses, minibuses and metered taxis are readily available from various parts of the city. One can also avail the highly efficient underground metro rail.
Photography / Video charges:Strictly prohibited.
Nearest Railway Station: Howrah and Sealdah
Nearest Metro Station: Mahatma Gandhi Road.
Nearest Functional Metro Station: Mahatma Gandhi Road.
Nearest International Airport: Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Intrnational Airport.
Time required for sightseeing: About 30 minutes.

Special Event / Annual Event

Kali Puja or Diwali.

Nearby Tourist Attractions

College Street, Asutosh Museum. (Birla Muesium, Victoria Memorial, Race Corse, Alipore Zoo- Near 3 K.M.)

Any Problemes : Contract me : RAJESH MISHRA 9831057985

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